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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Soursop \Sour"sop`\, n. (Bot.) The large succulent and slightly acid fruit of a small tree ( Anona muricata) of the West Indies; also, the tree itself. It is closely allied to the custard apple.


n. 1 Any of several small tropical evergreen trees, genus ''Annona''. 2 The tart, spiny, yellow-green fruit of this tree.

  1. n. small tropical American tree bearing large succulent slightly acid fruit [syn: prickly custard apple, soursop tree, Annona muricata]

  2. large spiny tropical fruit with tart pulp related to custard apples [syn: guanabana]


Soursop is the fruit of Annona muricata, a broadleaf, flowering, evergreen tree native to Mexico, Cuba, Central America, the Caribbean islands of Hispaniola and Puerto Rico, and northern South America, primarily Colombia, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Venezuela. Soursop is also produced in all tropical parts of Africa, especially in Eastern Nigeria, Mambilla Plateau and The Democratic Republic of Congo, Southeast Asia and the Pacific. It is in the same genus, Annona, as cherimoya and is in the Annonaceae family.

The soursop is adapted to areas of high humidity and relatively warm winters; temperatures below will cause damage to leaves and small branches, and temperatures below can be fatal. The fruit becomes dry and is no longer good for concentrate.

The flavour has been described as a combination of strawberry and pineapple, with sour citrus flavour notes contrasting with an underlying creamy flavour reminiscent of coconut or banana.

Soursop is widely promoted (sometimes as "graviola") as an alternative cancer treatment. There is, however, no medical evidence that it is effective.

Usage examples of "soursop".

Supper nonetheless consisted of an adequate platter of sand-creepers poached in sea-water, with a garnish of soursops and fried kale.